Honda puts new spiffs on Civic

American Honda Motor Co. is offering new incentives for sales and leases of new Civics.

Qualified buyers can get 1.9 percent financing for loans of 24 to 36 months on Civic models including the hybrid version, Honda says. The Civic model powered by natural gas does not qualify for the incentives.

For loans of 37 to 60 months, qualified buyers can get 3.9 percent financing.

Honda’s captive finance company, American Honda Finance Corp., is administering the incentive program.

Qualifed customers can get a 36-month Civic lease for $189 a month with $1,999 down. Previously lease terms were $199 a month with $2,799down.

Honda spokesman Chris Martin said Honda is “trying to keep demand steady for the Civic.”

“We just opened a new factory in Indiana, and gas prices are coming down,” Martin told Automotive News.

The Civic is one of the last Honda models to get special financing.

“That’s a car they didn’t have to incentivize to sell,” says Chad Jennings, finance director of Joe Marina Honda in Tulsa, Okla.

But some dealers say they are concerned that Honda has not matched Toyota’s 0 percent financing offer on 11 models.

John Jomehri, general sales manager of Metro Honda in suburban Los Angeles, says he doesn’t want Honda to offer 0 percent financing.

But “you are only competitive if you are in the ballpark with other people,” Jomehri adds.

Toyota is promoting its financing offer with a massive advertising campaign. Honda dealers say they wouldn’t mind a similar effort.

Says Jomehri: “People need to know that Honda Finance wants their business.”

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